Do you remember your marriage proposal?
After months (years) of courting and developing a relationship with your partner, you decide that a life-long commitment is something that would mutually benefit both of you.
You purchase a ring (or token of commitment) and propose this life-long commitment to your partner.
For many it is an elaborate proposal designed to create a lasting memory and an overwhelming “Yes”, for others it is a more intimate event reflecting on the great qualities of their relationship and the greater benefits that can be attained together.
In both instances, a compelling and personal proposal is provided.
So why isn’t it like that in Banking or Sales?
Aren’t we trying to develop a “life-long commitment” with a client? Haven’t we spent countless hours meeting them and learning all about their needs and “courting” them with our solutions?
If so, why do we not make the proposal a more compelling event?
I find it amazing that so many Bankers or Sales People spend so little time creating a customized proposal that brilliantly makes it compelling for the customer to say “I DO want to do business with you”.
Or they provide proposals that only focus on one specific need that does not provide a foundation for a life-long relationship.
Or they simply send the proposal to their prospective (business) partner and hope they will respond with a “yes”.
Like any proposal for a life-long commitment, I encourage you to observe these three key rules when developing proposals for new clients:
1. Do not be too quick to propose
Have you truly understood all your client’s needs and their decision-making criteria? Have you outlined a compelling solution for their needs? Are they ready and willing to commit?
Do not send provide a proposal until you have a clear idea that your client is satisfied with your solutions and have mitigated any possible objections.
Remember, you are paid to win new relationships not simply write proposals.
2. Make your proposal personal and compelling
Please DO NOT simply send term sheets with a bunch of generic flyers that promote your products and services. This is like someone proposing marriage with only a pre-nuptial contract in his or her hand.
I strongly encourage you to write a personalized proposal that captures ALL their SPECIFIC needs and provide overwhelmingly compelling (and personal) reasons for them to say “Yes”.
Create a compelling template that can be personalized and only captures solutions that meet their needs. This will ensure that you take the time to explore ALL their needs during your meetings so you can build a life-long commitment.
And I suggest that your Terms and Conditions can be positioned at the back of the proposal.
3. Present your proposal in-person (EVERY TIME)
If you have spent many many hours courting the client (in-person or over the phone) then why not spend 1 or 2 more hours presenting your proposal to them.
Please DO NOT ASSUME that you have done enough to win them over and the proposal is simply a formality. Wrong!
So many opportunities fail because of the lack of effort made to formally present our comprehensive and personalized proposals IN PERSON.
How many future spouses would be willing to say “I Do” if we simply mailed them a pre-nuptial agreement that highlights the house they will gain (or not gain) if they agree to a life-long commitment?
So why do we do that in business?!?
Please consider my three simple rules to making that very important event in your (business) life far more successful and certainly more enduring.
Good luck and I hope to hear “winning bells” in your future soon.
For more career, sales, and leadership advice please contact our coaches
Joe Micallef – Sales Coach – email email@example.com, or call (773) 329 0066
Donna Flynn – Career/Management Coach – email firstname.lastname@example.org, or call (630) 624-4319